Changes (The Randall Lee Mysteries #1) by Charles Colyott
Disclaimer: I received this book from the author in exchange for a review.
Summary: When a young woman is found murdered in a seedy massage parlor near his neighborhood, the police recruit Randall Lee - an American acupuncturist and Tai Chi master -- as a translator and expert in Chinese culture, to assist in the investigation. Lee discovers that the murderer is an expert in a forbidden Chinese martial art - the dark mirror to his own healing practices - and joins in the hunt for the killer to escape his own inner demons and save the woman he loves.
Review: A murder mystery with a lot of Tai Chi and a dose of acupuncture.
I read very few mysteries since they don’t really appeal to me much. Changes is a mystery, but it’s unlike any mystery I’ve read before. Changes takes place in Chinatown in St. Louis, which I can only imagine isn’t the most glamorous place to set a mystery. It focuses heavily on Chinese culture and Chinese gangs. Randall Lee practices Tai Chi and is an acupuncturist. It was very interesting to learn about acupuncture, Tai Chi, pressure points, internal versus external martial art styles, and Chinese culture in general.
Lee is a rather humorous and self deprecating fellow. He can get a bit much at times. I certainly can get sick of witty comments and he had plenty. I was surprised that the police turned to Lee to be a translator. I would have expected the police to find someone that was affiliated with the police in some way or through an official channel. I found it hard to believe that Knox would let Lee in some places he wasn’t supposed to be. The solution to the murder mystery was unexpected and was certainly very interesting to read.
Recommendation: I would recommend this book to those interested in unusual mysteries or mysteries with an Asian theme.